Study of Proposed Reservoir Clears Funding Hurdle

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A plan to build a 2,100-acre reservoir in Madison and Delaware counties has landed $600,000 from the state for the second phase of a feasibility study. Corporation for Economic Development Anderson/Madison County Executive Director Rob Sparks says the group hopes to have a "very good idea" of the proposed Mounds Lake Reservoir's overall impact by spring. The funding was approved late last month by the Indiana Revolving Loan Fund.

Sparks says the study will examine the feasibility, costs and benefits of the project for the communities involved.

He says additional, local efforts will raise additional money to cover expenses of gathering "the best information possible."

The Heart of the River Coalition opposes the project and, last month, refuted findings from an earlier study.

November 13, 2013

News Release

ANDERSON, Ind. - On October 30, the State of Indiana awarded, through its State Revolving Fund loan program, a $600,000 grant to the Corporation for Economic Development of Anderson/Madison County (CED). The grant will be used to complete a Phase II feasibility study of the proposed Mounds Lake project.

"We are very pleased the State has chosen to support our community effort for this next phase," said Rob Sparks, Executive Director for CED.

The grant will fund a scope of work including: environmental review, engineering, community impact, and community visioning. A financial report will be completed as well.

Sparks went on to say, "Our goal is by spring to have a very good idea of the feasibility, costs, and community benefits of the proposed Mounds Lake project. This grant, in conjunction with our local funding efforts, will enable our ability to gather the best information possible."

The proposed lake began to garner community and statewide interest after the initial Phase I study (completed in November 2011 by DLZ Engineering) was released this past March. In early fall 2013 CED presented the project and the scope of Phase II to the State for a possible grant opportunity. The project has also caught the attention of Indiana Governor, Mike Pence.

"The proposed Mounds Lake Reservoir would transform the Madison/Delaware County economy and help ensure ample water supply for central Indiana in the future," said Gov. Mike Pence. "The Phase II evaluation will help us understand the possible impacts of this potential project, and I look forward to receiving the results of the study next spring."

The proposed project would create a reservoir stretching over 2100 acres by building a 50-foot high earthen dam on the White River, just east of East Lynn Street and 18th Street in Anderson, backing water up in Delaware County to around 300 South and South High Banks Road. It involves areas of Anderson, Chesterfield, and Daleville, as well as parts of Madison and Delaware Counties.

Quinn Ricker of Ricker's first conceived the Project in 2010 at a Madison County Leadership Academy (MCLA) visioning session. Sparks, also a member of that MCLA class, continued to work with Ricker’s vision and develop the current project scope.

The lake, in addition to being a regional development project, has the ability to provide a significant amount of additional water reserves for central Indiana.

During the Phase I study the water yields would suggest meeting the current and future needs of the central Indiana region for several decades. The project could also accelerate the ongoing economic growth of the Madison and Delaware County region. To date, CED has raised over $400,000 of direct or in-kind contributions to advance the project.

The Corporation for Economic Development Anderson / Madison County is a 501c3 non-profit that was incorporated in 1983. The mission of the Corporation for Economic Development is to plan and undertake activities leading to steady job growth, increasing economic diversity, and a strengthened employer base, which enhances the quality of life of Madison County, Indiana.

For more information about Mounds Lake or CED, visit www.moundslake.com, or contact Rob Sparks at 765-642-1860 or at robsparks@cedanderson.com.

Sources: The Corporation for Economic Development Anderson/Madison County, Inside INdiana Business, The Heart of the River Coalition